In the late 1920s and early 1930s, the Missionary Society of Saint Columban had been in existence for only about a decade, but it was expanding and branching out into new endeavors.
In 1929, the Columban Fathers conducted their first retreat at Saint Columban’s, Nebraska, under the supervision of Columban Father Edward J. McCarthy.
In 1930, the retreats expanded and started to become regular occurrences. They provided clergy and lay people an opportunity to step back from their busy daily lives and reflect on spirituality and Christian faith.
In 1952 Columban Father Paul Waldron took over the Columban retreat program and organized retreats all over the U.S.A.
Columban retreats have continued to expand, and the Columban Fathers have set up retreat programs in the Philippines, Fiji, Korea, Chile and other countries.
Columban retreats have become a tradition, and continue to afford a way for growth in faith and life in general.